The best skincare tips for winter – say goodbye to dull, dry skin!

What are the best skincare tips during Winter?

Winter doesn’t have to mean dull, dry and lifeless skin! The cold weather takes a toll on our skin therefore adaptive skincare is essential. The drop in humidity levels in our environment results in more moisture loss from our skin, a process known as osmosis.

Our skin needs EXTRA care and attention in Winter, and changes need to be implemented to your routine. Otherwise, you can end up with more than just dry skin and a plethora of skin problems!

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate and “chemo” exfoliate! 

Here are my top tips for looking after your skin in Winter.

1. Soap is a dirty word! Cleanse without stripping.

Your skin is already struggling with moisture loss from low humidity and overheating in air conditioning. Do your skin a favour and cleanse without stripping using a cleanser free of harsh surfactants and detergents. This means AVOID anything that foams when you add water.

A good cleanser should also hydrate your skin (look for glycerine) AND have anti-inflammatory ingredients to protect from environmental damage like B3 (niacinamide) and chamomile.

My Concentrated Cleanser is not only soap-free but it is also boosted with anti-inflammatory vitamin B3 (niacinamide), soothing botanicals and hydrating glycerine. Designed and tested for all skin types. 


2. Moisturise! Moisturise! Moisturise!

Lower humidity in the atmosphere means drier skin. You will probably find you will need a more enriched nourishing moisturiser in Winter than in Summer due to the lower humidity and overheating. That’s why I’m not a big believer in skin types as our “type” literally changes with the weather.

If we are in a humid environment, like Singapore, we need a lighter moisturiser, but if we are in the Alps in Winter, our skin is dry and needs heavier moisturisers that contain more humectants (moisture/water binding ingredients think glycerine/hyaluronic acid) and occlusives (things that stop water and moisture loss).

My top ingredients are glycerine, medical-grade lanolin (the closest thing to natural skin oils), shea butter and hyaluronic acid. All found in the Concentrated Hydration+ boosted with 5% vitamin B3 (niacinamide) which integrates so you don’t feel oily with residue BUT holds moisture in all day (12-15 hours) AND doubles up as an eye cream.

Remember BOTH the Concentrated Moisturiser+ and Concentrated Hydration+ can be used together to get that extra thirst-quenching boost and double up on B3 (niacinamide) in a layered approach! The 5% B3 in each product will not only strengthen the dry Winter skin outer barrier layer preventing moisture loss, but it will also increase your natural moisturising factor & ceramide levels. 


3. Don’t forget the body’s skin!

Oil up literally. In the bath or shower, lock moisture in. In fact, use a hydrating oil-based wash in the shower or bath. Moisturise frequently, and IMMEDIATELY after you come out of the shower to always prevent dehydration by evaporation and lock the moisture in. Moisturisers containing substances such as glycerine and lanolin help seal in moisture and fortify the skin’s barrier function.

Our dr.NC Concentrated Hand & Body Butter is the perfect antidote for dry body skin. A thick balm that seamlessly absorbs without the residue and contains aloe vera, shea butter, glycerine, coconut oil and exfoliating AHA (lactic acid) and BHA (sal acid) to remove and exfoliate the dull Winter skin.

Hydrate and exfoliate all in one, leaving body skin looking like it’s fresh out of the day spa. 


4. Enrich with Vitamins

If your skin is feeling dry and sensitive, combat it with a soothing facial B3 (niacinamide) serum, under your enriched moisturiser. Niacinamide reduces inflammation that occurs from the wind and overheating. It strengthens the epidermal barrier function, protecting your skin from the Winter elements.

Winter wears down your barrier so B3 will protect against this. It also increases your natural moisturising ceramide levels (one of the most important natural moisturising factors).

Finally, it is the single best anti-inflammatory ingredient that exists in skin care today, so it will soothe inflamed Winter skin and rosacea. Found in the Concentrated Moisturiser+, Concentrated Hydration+, Concentrated Illuminator and Concentrated CC+ Cream SPF 30. 


5. Ditch scrubs and “Chemo” exfoliate

Get rid of mechanical exfoliants and do not use scrubs on the face. I don’t believe them at any time of the year, but they will be even more irritating in Winter. They literally destroy the VERY important barrier layer of the skin which increases ageing, sensitivity, dehydration, and damage.

Instead invest in cell exfoliating ingredients to remove dry, dull lacklustre skin cells. Look for: lactic acid and AHAs. Lactic is my pick as it exfoliates, cell renews AND is a humectant, which means it can exfoliate and hydrate at the same time. I love multitasking ingredients.

It is also one of the more gentle AHAs so perfect at this time of year.
Use the Concentrated Micropeel once a week. 



6. Protect from Pollution

Pollution and pollu-ageing are buzzwords that are being increasingly debated and discussed in international dermatology circles over the past 2 years. Many experts feel it could be as damaging as UV!

Pollution in the form of fumes, dirt, smoke and dust creates free radicals that accelerate ageing. Free radicals can also damage the skin, increasing irritation and aggravating conditions like eczema.

The Concentrated Illuminator is a powerful hybrid anti-oxidant serum containing B3, C, E and glycerine. The perfect solution to combat pollution ageing or pollu-ageing. This powerhouse will combat the damage in 2 ways.

Firstly, the B3 (niacinamide) strengthens the barrier layer stopping pollution particles from getting in. Secondly, it is filled with a cocktail of antioxidants that mop up and eradicate the oxidative damage created by the pollution and UV itself.

In addition, choose moisturisers that protect against environmental aggressors. Look for antioxidant vitamin B3 (niacinamide) and vitamin C. 


7. Don’t get Caught in the UV Trap

You still can be damaged by the sun’s UV rays during Winter. In fact, potentially more as you stay out longer as it is not so hot! You could say you get a false sense of security and in fact, create more damage as you don’t “feel” the warning signs like heat or burning.

I’m a fan of physical blockers, so zinc and titanium dioxide-based sunscreens are my favourites. Even better with environmental protection antioxidants like niacinamide. That’s why I created the Concentrated CC+ Cream SPF 30 boosted with 5% B3 (niacinamide).

Always apply your SPF after moisturising.

My rule is 2 applications every 2 hours if you are actively outdoors and DON’T forget your hands, especially when driving. The other area not to underestimate getting damaged in Winter is the décolletage skin as prevention goes a long way so NEVER forget to add some sunscreen here!


More than skin-deep for winter skin

Anything we should be eating or drinking for more radiant skin, preventing that ‘dull’ appearance?

Supplements are super beneficial for the skin:

  • Niacinamide: repairs and replaces ALL our bodies’ cell’s engine room known as the mitochondria. The mitochondria slow down and deteriorate with age. It also repairs UV-induced DNA damage and is one of the most powerful antioxidants. It increases the strength of our barrier layer AND upregulates levels of one of our most important moisturising factors in the skin: ceramides!
  • Vitamin C: for collagen. It is an important cofactor in collagen production and acts as a powerful antioxidant, preserving it in the skin
  • Fish oil: hydration and reduces inflammation
  • Vitamin D: You’re getting less UV exposure with shorter days, so you need to take Vitamin D supplements regularly. I recommend 1000 – 2000 iu a day.
  • Red foods: these are packed with carotenoids. Compounds that are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories: think tomatoes, capsicum and carrots. Go for tomato and carrot soup! Tomatoes have one of the best carotenoids in them known as Lycopene. The trick is the Lycopene is all in the skin of the tomato and is only absorbed when cooked. So don’t throw away the skins!